Apple TV’s Servant
Season 1, Episode 7: “Haggis”
Directed by Alexis Ostrander
Written by Tony Basgallop
* For a recap & review of the previous episode, “Rain” – click here
* For a recap & review of the next episode, “Boba” – click here
Dorothy’s sitting in the shower, spaced out. She’s brought Jericho, but he’s a reborn doll once more. “He‘s okay,” she’s told. She takes the doll in her arms and cradles it to her chest. This is actually the moment she got the doll, when she was caught up in the trauma of losing her child.
We now see her in current day, talking away to a friend doing homeopathic therapy on her, Natalie (Jerrika Hinton). It’s quite a shock when she tells Natalie about Jericho having a nanny around— she’s the one who handed the reborn doll to Dorothy in the opening shower scene. Natalie’s worried. Even more so once she hears actual baby cries coming from upstairs. She goes to check in on Jericho, only to be thrown by her hair to the floor by Leanne, who runs off further upstairs with the child. Sean finds Natalie rushing around and the two get talking about the “delusion” going on in that home. He plays it off like there’s not an actual flesh and blood baby there. Natalie’s concerned he’s becoming delusional, too.
The fact Dorothy wants to have Natalie over for dinner soon doesn’t get Sean excited. He’s wondering how they’re going to keep the delusions under wraps if she’s in their house, where the baby’s living and breathing unlike the doll with which she helped facilitate the grieving parents.
Next day, Leanne and Sean talk about how to “keep a lid” on everything with Natalie around. Their relationship is intriguing, because at times he’s sceptical and even scared of Leanne/her past, then at others he’s willing to trust her. Just goes to show how twisted and strange the whole tale has become. Sean’s also got to get Julian in on the entire ordeal, though the brother-in-law won’t trust the nanny quite yet.
Their dinner party begins.
Sean’s preparing haggis. Leanne serves it up, telling everybody about the meal and all the intricacies the chef put into the cooking. She pops a balloon in the middle of the table, a little party surprise. After that, Dorothy says grace, surprising everybody. Natalie’s curious and Dorothy mentions she and her husband have “private beliefs.” In the basement, Leanne goes to get a bottle of wine and finds the foundation cracking right beneath her feet. Simultaneously, Natalie wants to confront hard truths. She tells Dorothy: “You are not well.” The lady of the house lets rip on everybody for coddling her. She walks out on them to see her son.
Natalie tries having a chat with the nanny about Dorothy’s mental health. She reveals more to Leanne about how she helped the grieving mother after the big loss. They’re interrupted for party games. Natalie goes up to the washroom and when she comes out she hears a suspicious noise. She walks in to Jericho’s room to check on him and hears an animal growling. Suddenly a dog’s chasing her, his mouth stained red. She comes running down over the stairs and Julian has to beat the animal to death with a wine bottle.
Natalie’s seen the real baby. She wants to know where it came from, questioning Julian. He claims it’s an “incest rape situation” and Leanne turned up with a child on their doorstep. Julian mentions they were “all there” the night Jericho died, wondering why nobody’s concerned about him, too. There have been suggestions of something quite dark behind the entire situation. What exactly happened? There’s a reason Julian and Sean have been letting the delusion play out this long without taking serous action.
While Julian and Natalie fall into each other’s arms, fucking in the basement, the married couple dance together upstairs quietly. In her room, the nanny reads more Bible verses, disturbed by the death of the dog. She heads downstairs, slipping away silently into the room with the dead dog. It’s only minutes later that Julian’s preparing to leave and the dog comes running, right out the front door. Coincidence there’s been another resurrection with Leanne in close proximity?
More than that, did Leanne put the dog in there to guard baby Jericho? Did it really just sneak its way in through the other entrance?
Interesting moment when Leanne’s watching TV.
A televangelist is preaching, paraphrasing Numbers 16:30.
Have Julian and Sean “betrayed the Lord“? Has Leanne?
A fantastic episode. So much going on again, but the inclusion of Natalie here has upped the stakes, at least partly. Exciting, weird, and macabre stuff happening in every episode. Plus, the actors are all knocking it out of the park.
“Boba” is next.